Alan Wong's (Honolulu)
Posted 03 December 2002 - 09:04 PM
The restaurant is housed in a nondescript office building...this is not the place to dine if you are looking for palm trees and sunsets! The restaurant (located on the 3rd floor) is large with an exhibition kitchen, dining room with Hawaiian browns and tans, and a "patio" overlooking the street. I sit at the Chef's counter to enjoy the show the kitchen crew provides. I usually dine here 10+ times a year and have been semi-adopted by the kitchen crew. Since I do dine there frequently and Chef WOng challenges his crew to be inventive...I am a beneficiary of some of their experiments. I must say I have not met one yet I didn't thoroughly enjoy .
I will list the amuse from both meals, then follow with the menu and the items I took in.
My first meal began with an amuse of a blini brushed with a light wasabi creme fraiche, topped by fresh salmon wrapped in nori and garnished with salmon roe...excellent. Next the kitchen sent out one of my all time favorites, Mein taiko risotto topped with a skewer containing one grilled shrimp and one seared day boat scallop.
For the second dinner the amuse were: a tower of lump crab atop a yuzu/lemon granita with a drizzle of chive oil and topped with a tomato confit.
This sounds like a lot going on...but, the flavors and textures blended amazingly well. Very Good.
The second amuse: two perfectly seared dayboat scallops placed atop a sunchoke puree and topped with thinly julienned scallions...excellent.
Third...my favorite Alan Wong "oldie": Soup and a Sandwich....a minature grilled cheese sandwich with pulled kalua pork, foie gras and swiss cheese, served atop a papadum which rests across a martini glass filled with red and yellow tomato soups.
On to the menu (and one night's tasting menu). Dishes I enjoyed over the two meals are noted with *.
*New Wave Opihi Shooter-Local Limpet, chiffonade of basil, nicoise olive, chiso and tomato water...served in a test-tube like glass, to be swallowed in one shot. Refreshing
*Hot "California" Rolls, But with no rice-Baked Kona Lobster Mousse wrapped in Nori with Crab Avocado Stuffing and topped with wasabi and regular flying fish roe and salmon roe- An explosion of flavors and very rich...another house specialty.
*Ahi Carpaccio-with Ahi Poke, Ponzu and Truffle Oil- Outstandingly fresh ahi, pounded thin with a mound of ahi poke in the center and drizzles of truffle oil and chili. Lots of clean flavors...with the truffle oil lending just a touch of earthiness.
-Chopped Ahi Sashimi and Avocado Salsa-Stacked on a Crispy Wonton, Spicy Aioli and Wasabi Soy.
-"Poki-Pines"-Crispy Won Ton Ahi Poke Ballls on Avocado with Wasabi Sauce.
-"Da Bag"- Steamed Clams with Kalua Pig, Shiitake Mushrooms and Spinach in a foil bag (reminiscent of the Jiffy Pop Popcorn look).
-Hoisin BBQ Baby Back Ribs.
-Nori Wrapped Tempura Bigeye Tuna-Tomato Ginger Relsih and Soy Mustard Sauce.
-Kalbi Style Beef Won Ton Taco- Korean Kim Chee and Pineapple Red Onion Relish.
-Caesar Salad"-Chopped Romaine with a Creamy Anchovy Dressing and Kalua Pig, Lomi Tomato served in a cheese basket
-"Ahi Cake"- Marinated Eggplant Layered with Maui Onions, Basil, Seared Bigeye Ahi and Tomatoes with a Big Island Goat Cheese Lemongrass Dressing.
-"Tomato Salad"- with Li Hing Mui Vinaigrette
-"Potsticker Salad"- Crsipy Asian Won Ton Slaw with Soy Vinaigrette
-"Chinatown Quesadilla"- with Chinese Roast Duck Salad, Hoisin Soy Mustard Dressing, Jalapeno Oil
*Kiawe Grilled Beef Tenderloin with Wasabi Sauce and Potato Gratin...Excellent beef with a hint of smoke. Killer potato gratin...lots of layered firm potatoes and cheese...Very Good.
*Macadamia Nut-Coconut Crusted Lamb Chops, Asian Ratatouille, Roasted Garlic Smashed Potatoes, Natural Jus...three of the most incredibly tender, rare lamb chops...with a hint of cruch from the macadamia coating...outstanding.
-Seared Yellowfin Ahi-Served Rare with Crispy Asian Slaw in Soy Vinaigrette
-Sauteed Shrimp and Clams with Penne Pasta-Chili Garlic Lemongrass Bolack Bean Sauce.
-Kiawe Grilled Mahimahi-Wasabi Sauce, Stir Fried Vegetables
-Steamed Bowl of Shellfish"- Lobster, Crab, Scallop, Shrimp and Clams in a Bouillabaisse Style Broth with a Chili Pepper Aioli and Roasted Garlic Smashed Potatoes (another favorite dish).
-Pan Steamed Opakapaka- Shrimp Pork Hash, Truffle Nage, Gingered Vegetables and Tapioca Pearls.
-Ginger Crusted Onaga-Miso Sesame Vinaigrette, Shiitake and Enoki Mushrooms, Corn.
-Kiawe Grilled Ribeye Steak with Mushrooms and Onion-on Linguine tossed in Bagna Cauda.
*Five Spoonfuls of Brulee-Normally I ignore creme brulee...but, this one I have to have. Five "Chinese" soup spoons adhered to a granite slab. Coffee with a chocolate coffee bean; Chocolate with a small square of swirled white and milk chocolate; Orange with candied orange peel, Lilioi with a touch of lilikoi syrup and a seed; Macadamia with chopped macadamia nuts...all excellent.
-"The Chocolate Sampler"- Chocolate Crunch Bars, Chocolate Bombe, Chocolate Soup and Chocolate Sorbet.
-A Tasting of Housemade Sorbets-FIve Flavors of the day
-"The Coconut" Haupia Sorbet in a Chocolate Shell. Served with Tropical Fruits and Lilikoi Sauce.
-"Wong Way Tiramisu"-Chocolate espresso Pot de Creme Topped with Chiffon Cake Layers and Mascarpone Cheese with Kona Coffee Granite.
-Apple Banana Raspberry Oat Crumble-with Jack Daniels Vanilla Ice Cream.
-Okinawan Sweet Potato Cheesecake with Haupia Sorbet and Azuki Been Relish.
-Chocolate "Crunch Bars"- Layers of Milk Chocolate, Macadamia Nut Crunch and Bittersweet Chocolate Mousse.
Bittersweet Chocolate Decadence-Raspberry and Vanilla Ice Cream Swirl.
"Banana Cream Pie"-with Chocolate Ice Cream
-Coconut Tapioca with Passion Fruit Sorbet and Fresh Fruits
-Panna Cotta-Orange Creamsicle Flavored Cream woth Caramel Sauce and Candied Orange Peels
-Lilikoi Cheesecake with Guava Sorbet
-Jasmine Green Tea Gelee with Lychee Sorbet and Fresh Fruits
-"Caramel Apple"-Butter Poached Apple in Filo Wrap, Salty Caramel Foam
-Pumpkin Cheesecake with Cinnamon Ice Cream
-Meyer Lemon Meringue Tart with Lemon Sorbet
Posted 03 December 2002 - 09:20 PM
Posted 03 December 2002 - 09:26 PM
It is unfair to have to read your posts when you are hungry!
Posted 03 December 2002 - 09:30 PM
Lizzie--now you know how I felt as I followed you through France !!
Edited by southern girl, 03 December 2002 - 09:31 PM.
Posted 03 December 2002 - 10:22 PM
Posted 03 December 2002 - 10:25 PM
Posted 03 December 2002 - 10:39 PM
....I am lucky enough to be going back next month and will have at least three meals there during my visit...
Ahh Alan Wong's..... Had an absolutely stellar meal there a number of years back. If you're going back and haven't tried it before, I would highly reccomend Indigo in the old part of Honolulu (also definately not the palm tree and sunset scene). In my book, still the reigning world ahi grilling champion. They're open for lunch too, if you don't want to give up one of you dinners at AW's.
- Victor Bergeron, Trader Vic's Book of Food & Drink, 1946
Posted 04 December 2002 - 10:28 AM
Has anyone tried his pineapple martini? Not sweet. He ferments the vodka (Skye, I believe) with ripe pineapple in the refrigerator for 3 or so days and then strains out the vokda. It is an amazing drink!
Posted 04 December 2002 - 04:05 PM
Posted 05 December 2002 - 07:37 AM
I didn't know this was an option when I was there. It sounds like it may be worth returning to Hawaii to try it.
Posted 05 December 2002 - 08:59 AM
Posted 05 December 2002 - 09:18 AM
Alan Wong's Restaurant
1857 S King St # 3, Honolulu, HI 96826
Phone: (808) 949-2526
Posted 22 October 2003 - 06:57 PM
I too had one of my best meals ever at Alan Wong's.
A must for fine dining enthusiasts while in Honolulu is Alan Wong's Restaurant.
Located at 1857 S. King Street, 3rd floor (take elevator, valet parking $3), Honolulu, HI. Location is west of McCully/King. Phone: 808.949.2526 reservations a must. If reservations are full, you might try to ask for the small (4) person seating at a bar that overlooks the kitchen, did not notice this seating option until we were leaving the restaurant.
Chef Wong is a MASTER at using local Hawaiian food with Asian/French touches.
See a sampling of one of his dinner menus:
Everything was perfect except where noted.
For appetizers our family had:
"Hot" California Rolls, Da Bag, Duck Nacho
Main Courses were:
Ginger Crusted Onaga (mainstay on menu, terrific), Mac/Coconut crusted Lamb,
Steamed Bowl of Shell fish(the weak dish on the menu), Seared Yellowfin Ahi
Waitstaff was attentive w/o being intrusive.